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COL@KC: Shields collects milestone strikeout in win

The Royals will not be dressed in their regular home Sunday uniforms when they take the field for the finale of a four-game series with the Orioles.

The normal baby blue tops and white pants with royal blue trim will be replaced with the mid-1920s garb worn by the Kansas City Monarchs.

The Orioles will join the Royals in honoring the Negro Leagues by sporting the late-1920s uniform of the Baltimore Black Sox.

"They've been doing that for a few years and I think it's a great honor not only just for the Negro Leagues, but just for people of color in general," former Royals outfielder Willie Wilson said. "There were a lot of tough times back then, it was a situation where people of my color couldn't play this great game."

The retro uniforms are part of a larger MLB effort to preserve the history of the Negro Leagues.

"It's going to be a very special day," Royals outfielder Lorenzo Cain said. "The things that they had to deal with way back then, and the things they had to go through to allow African Americans like myself to play in this game today, it means a ton, I can't even explain it."

Ace James Shields will be on the mound looking to help the Royals split the series. In his last outing, Shields accomplished one of the most elusive feats in his brief Royals career: success at home.

Shields' line last Tuesday against the Rockies -- seven innings, one run, eight strikeouts -- might seem like a typical Shields start, but it was uncharacteristic based on his history at Kauffman Stadium.

In 43 starts since joining Kansas City, Shields holds a 3.02 ERA. But in 19 home starts, that ERA is 4.31. Conversely, he's been nearly unbeatable on the road, posting a 2.00 ERA and a 14-4 record. The fact that The K is regarded as a pitcher-friendly park makes these numbers all the more puzzling.

Shields will square off against Baltimore's Ubaldo Jimenez.

Orioles: Adjusting to life without Wieters
When the Orioles placed All-Star catcher Matt Wieters on the disabled list on May 11, it represented a setback for a surging team, and an unfortunate hindrance for Wieters, who was enjoying his best season in the final year of his contract.

Wieters posted career highs in average (.308) and slugging percentage (.500) in his first 26 games, but an injured right elbow sent him to the disabled list.

The effect on the Orioles was tangible as they dropped four straight with Wieters, a two-time Gold Glove award winner, out of the lineup.

Baltimore called upon Steve Clevenger and Caleb Joseph to fill Wieters' role, and the duo has responded with moderate production. Joseph started for the Orioles on Saturday and went 0-for-2.

"They're still in that development curve as far as calling games," acting manager John Russell said. "There's still a physical side of it, a mental side of it, they see things that they haven't seen. Fortunately for us, we've got a catcher in Matt that's still here and that can also talk to them if he sees things he's experienced back there."

Royals: Yost confident in Butler
Going into Saturday night's game against the Orioles, designated hitter Billy Butler was 1-for-14 on this homestand and his average was .226 with one home run and 14 RBIs. But manager Ned Yost was confident Butler will come around.

"It's not what I'm seeing from him, it's what I've seen from him in the past," Yost said. "He's a lifetime .300 hitter. He's going through a struggle for the first time.

"He got out of whack and he doesn't know why. He could always feel his swing. [Now], he's feeling things he never felt before and it's harder for him to make an adjustment right now."

Yost said that hitting coach Pedro Grifol has made an adjustment on Butler's swing which seems to have helped in Friday night's 4-0 loss. Butler also drove in the ultimate winning run with an RBI single in the first inning of Saturday's 1-0 win.

Worth noting
• After a day off on Saturday, catcher Salvador Perez returns to the Royals' lineup to catch Shields on Sunday. Perez is tied for the team lead in home runs with four.

• Jimenez started the season with a 6.59 ERA in his first five starts, but over his last three starts, the O's righty has allowed just one run in 19 2/3 innings with 20 strikeouts. Comments